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Would Canes-Gruden really be a great fit?

University of Miami athletic director Kirby Hocutt is expected to deliver his pitch to Jon Gruden in person Wednesday and try to snag the biggest fish in all of football. But if Hocutt can't bait him (I'd say there probably is a better chance Hocutt won't) it doesn't mean the Hurricanes will necessarily be losing out.

Jon Gruden As sexy a hire as Gruden might be for the people powering this push for relevance at UM, the truth is there are probably better fits the Hurricanes can find elsewhere. History tells us the most successful coaches at UM -- Howard Schnellenberger, Jimmy Johnson, Dennis Erickson, Butch Davis and, yes, Larry Coker -- weren't exactly big names or established championship coaches before they became the man at Miami. They made their mark at UM as hungry, up-and-comers looking to establish their own fame and success.

Gruden has already tasted his. He won a Super Bowl when he was 38 years old, the youngest ever at the time. Now, he entertains us on Monday Night Football (kind of reminds me a little of John Madden). The issue here isn't if Gruden would be a good coach at Miami. The man knows football. He was 100-85 and made the playoffs five times in 11 NFL seasons. There's no doubt he would give Hocutt and UM's administration exactly what they're looking for: an instant shot of relevance and excitement for a rabid fan base starving for some.

The issue for UM, in the end, is if Gruden will really be the perfect fit -- especially for around $3.5 million (astronomical rates by Canes standards). Is the grind that is recruiting something Gruden is going to want to do? How about the every day stuff like chasing 18 and 19-year old players to class, making sure they stay away from South Beach, and helping who ever needs counseling get through tough struggles off the field? You know, The U family stuff. UM President Donna Shalala may love winning more than anybody at UM, as Hocutt said Sunday. But she doesn't seem to me like a person who will all of a sudden let the principles she asked Randy Shannon to uphold slip, so UM can win more games and play for championships. 

I'm not saying Gruden couldn't be Superman here and do it all well. But the fact is he hasn't coached in college since 1991. All he's known for the last 19 years is the NFL. His reputation (one I gathered from talking to a sports writer who covered him in Tampa) is that of a football coach who is a competitive junkie, someone who loves the X's and O's with a passion and drives his assistants hard to achieve perfection. He's a guy who wakes up at 3 a.m. and is in the building to work by 4:30 or 5. Nothing wrong if you want to win. But college football is clearly a completely different animal than the NFL.

And that formula of winning at the NFL level doesn't always translate to college. Bill Walsh went from winning three Super Bowls with the 49ers in the 1980s to spending three years at Stanford in 1992. He won 10 games in his first season including the Pac 10 title, then went 7-14-1 over his next two. Bill Callahan led the Raiders to the Super Bowl in 2002 (against Gruden) and in 2004 found himself at Nebraska. He went 27-22 and in four seasons and played for the Big 12 title only once. He's now back in the NFL as an assistant. Al Groh (Virginia) and Chan Gailey (Georgia Tech) are others who won some, but didn't have major success in the ACC. The point is for every Pete Carroll at USC or Nick Saban at LSU and Alabama, there are examples of an NFL coach going back to college and not working.

And Gruden will definitely have to recruit. This isn't a team built to win a championship right. The quarterback play remains questionable. Receivers, linebackers and defensive tackles aren't stacked either. This isn't a matter of a team ready to win a championship and just needing the right leader.

In the end, who really knows what Gruden's intentions are and why he's even meeting with Hocutt at this point. Maybe, he'd like to coach his son Deuce (currently a junior in high school) in college? Maybe coaching at Carrollwood High got him thinking he'd like to go back to coaching young players, teach them the fundamentals of the game. Maybe, he would like to coach with his brother, Jay, potentially his offensive coordinator, and be the next biggest thing on South Beach behind LeBron, Wade and Bosh. Maybe, he'd love to be the next Pete Carroll and win three national championships. Or, maybe, this is all about Gruden trying to get his name out with the NFL season coming to a close soon and big jobs likely to become available. Whatever his intentions, that's Gruden's business. Miami seems to be willing to go to extremes to get him.

All I know is on Sunday, as we listened to Hocutt, I heard three different messages about his search for a choice. The first: "At the U, we expect to compete for championships and nothing less." The next: "Miami must be relevant in college football." And the last: "You can be relevant nationally and not win your conference. But at the end of the day, you must be relevant nationally here at the University of Miami."

Gruden would definitely make the Canes relevant. But I'm not sold on the rest of it. I'd rather have a guy who has done it all already somewhere else and is ready to take his success -- and UM's -- to the next level.

> I just want to give credit to our own Barry Jackson and Susan Miller Degnan for some excellent reporting tonight on this Gruden story. It's easy for anybody -- me included -- to get on Twitter and post stuff we hear from sources. But I can tell you putting it in print is a different deal. Barry and Susan worked hard last night to get a lot of good detail in today's story from sources as close to the situation as possible.

> As the story mentioned, if Gruden doesn't pan out the other potential targets include Mississippi State's Dan Mullen, Stanford's Jim Harbaugh, Connecticut's Randy Edsall, Utah's Kyle Whittingham and Arizona's Mike Stoops, plus at least two others names, sources said.

Of that group, Mullen, Harbaugh and Edsall intrigue me the most. The issue of course is that Mississippi State is trying to act fast as possible to resign Mullen to a bigger contract. Harbaugh, a Michigan grad, has done a great job at USC and would also be a huge get for Miami. But I suspect he'd be Wolverines all the way if he left Stanford. Edsall is probably the most reachable. He just isn't the name that sparkles and gets fans excited. So, essentially, I think this list will expand to include some more top-notch names.

As I was told last night by a source, UM is ultimately looking for a charismatic leader who is an established winning he coach and doesn't come with any baggage. Just thinking out loud, but I think Wisconsin's Bret Bielema (45-16 at Wisconsin) and Baylor's Art Briles are guys who have won in tough conferences that probably deserve consideration. Outside of that, a good NFL coordinator wouldn't be bad -- especially with the labor issues in store for next year.

Comments

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Wow no african american canidates, SHOCKING.... yeah rite we're not good enough.

This is funny they fired Randy to go after Mike Stoops who has the same record as Randy. Let's see what has the Uconn coach ever won ''NOTHING''. Dan Mullen wow 8-4 man UM has to be kidding me. Gruden isn't coming, you so call loyal UM fans can laugh now and cry later when this team is 5-7 next year O I forgot U will blame Randy.

@the rula: homie relax its only a matter of time before an african american coach wins the bcs title. as for coach shannon being fired, it is a sad thing to see someone who IS the university of miami being hit low by a leprechuan (shalala)

Gus Malzahn people! Think of what that guy would do with our kick-ass OL, Bridgewater at QB, and Miller and Storm at RB, not to mention our WRs, who can be coached to performing once again at pre-2010 levels. This guy is an offensive genius, the same guy who made the WildCat relevant in all of football (NFL included). Our O would be UNSTOPPABLE!!!

Plus, he comes from the hottest team in the SEC, so he'd know a thing or two about recruiting (especially in Florida but also other parts of the South), stiff competition and defense.

And finally, rumor has it he WANTS the job! I think he's wanted to be part of Miami for awhile. His buddy David Lee is the QB coach for the Dolphins and he'd probably come over to run our offense.

We need someone with SEC experience. Look at what FSU is doing under Jimbo Fisher, who came from LSU. Give me Mullen or Malzahn and these Canes will once again be able to compete in the best state for college football in the country.

GO CANES!!!

Here's another writer who agrees with you Manny:

http://jacksonville.com/opinion/blog/400617/gene-frenette/2010-11-29/gene-frenette-jon-gruden-wouldn%E2%80%99t-be-good-fit-miami

Why does this have to become AT ALL about the coach's race? Who has been coaching us the past four years? Yeah...riiiight...

It is about getting THE BEST MAN for the job. If Gruden was green, I'd still want him to be the first choice to be the next coach @ The U.

However, if he's not the man for the job, this blog by Manny certainly makes me feel better about the situation. Also, props to you for (unlike yours truly) not reporting on "Bleacher Report"s and every other silly rumor heard on Twitter. I can get away with it because I'm not a journalist...you definitely can't.

That said, I heard Kirby bought Grudes a fat steak dinner and many, many beers and they ended up at Mons Venus last night. Any truth to this?

;)

And here's an opposing view: http://www.tampabay.com/sports/college/will-jon-gruden-settle-for-miami-or-will-the-hurricanes-settle-for-jim/1137316

And could we stop talking about race?!?!?! People are sick of losing. If Randy would've brought in the W's, his race wouldn't have been an issue. FACT: EVEN BLACK PEOPLE WANTED RANDY GONE. Moreover, if Tony Dungy wanted to coach the Canes, I'm sure Canes fans would be giddy with excitement!

GO CANES!!!

I'm a black guy...and I was WAY ahead of the Randy Shannon firing. Note to all the people pointing fingers and calling others racist....IF YOU ARE NOT GETTING YOUR JOB DONE YOU SHOULD BE FIRED!!!!! NO EXCUSES!!!!!

If we don't get Gruden, I would've considered this experience a major disappointment. Gruden's the big fish in the pond. He's Roman Catholic for Christ sakes, You know they got the killer instinct.

rula...the truth hurts sometimes...get over it !!!

What about Chud?

He's currently the OC/Asst HC w/ the Chargers. Already has 3 rings as a Cane. Knows how to move the ball. Just Sayin.

Only winners takethe hc job at the U and for that I respect and honor Randy Shannon.

While Gruden's salary would probably be way beyond what UM has paid before, UM's TV revenue will be way beyond what it's been before starting next year. Through this year, the school has gotten an average of $6 million per year from the ACC TV deal. Starting next year, it will get $12.9 million per year from the new ACC - ESPN TV deal. I believe that that is one of the main reasons money is not an obstacle in UM's coaching search.

Manny, Guess the cool sportswriter thing to do is take the opposite opinion right now, but you have some real credibility issues lately.

First, you wrote that BS piece a week or so ago about Shannon's winning percentage compared to other coaches hired in the same time frame. Was so out of left field and showed that you had NO IDEA that this change was coming.

Then this week you start tweeting that Gruden is a done deal. Now you're saying it probably won't happen. Maybe the Herald should order you to shut down your Twitter account like Shannon did to the players.

As for this team not ready for a Championship, let's take a look at that. The issue with Shannon all along was player development and motivation. If Gruden can develop and motivate these current players, we could easily win the ACC Championship, maybe more. Remember this year's team was a preseason Top 10 and you Manny, picked them to beat Ohio State at the Horseshoe. That would have made us a National Championship contender this year. I think the talent is on this roster to fill the holes. You have to wonder how many Sam Shields are sitting there just waiting for quality coaching to become NFL caliber players.

Finally, I live in North Carolina. I average going to one game a year. I used to be a Hurricane Club member back in the 80's and 90's. If Gruden get's hired, I'm back in the club and buying season tickets. Might do it for other coaches as well but the bottom line is Gruden will motivate players and fans the instant he is announced. Gruden is a home run and shows a serious commitment from the athletic dept. that will indeed make us relevant instantly.

Utah's Kyle Whittingham!! I am going to keep route! He is a winner, Run's the same style as offense as Mississippi State's coach! But build tough defenses!! Just watch the highlights between Alabama vs Utah!! Imagine what he could do with the hot bed of talent in South Florida!

@SomePerspective, don't rip Manny quite so hard. It's a difficult job to do during this time with the rumor mill swirling around Gruden. Just try following "Gruden" at search.twitter.com

I just listened to a VERY telling interview and "development and motivation" was NOT the only issue(s). A LOT about Shannon's BAD coaching style & tactics are coming out after the firing. He played MIND GAMES with college kids. That's just dumb.

Check the audio from The Michael Irvin Show interview w/ Spencer Adkins. It's hard to believe Shannon would take away the edge, but he did.

Skip ahead to 3:30 for Some(More)Perspective:

http://www.wqam.com/index.php?page=347

Good call @montanacane....I'm all about forward thinking

Good write up Manny.

I still don't think we're getting Gruden, but it would make a huge, immediate impact on this program. I think any other coach would be a move in the right direction, but it would take some time to materialize.

Gruden is the right move if you want to be relevant immediately.

Jon Gruden= Instant Relevance
From the source who originally broke the story:

http://blog.allcanes.com/2010/11/sources-gruden-to-um-official-by.html

Gruden is the best decision here. He will impact the program instantly and bring the pride and tradition back. This will eclipse Saban's impact at Alabama. Even if he doesn't stay for an extended amount of time, he has all the tools AND EXPERIENCE AS A HEAD COACH to bring back titles as early as next year.
Recruiting problems? No worries. That is what his staff is for. Hire those who know the territory. All he has to do is walk through a living room door to seal the deal. Move over MEYER and Jimbo. You WILL continue to get locked out of the state of MIAMI.

For the guys that like the name Dan Mullen I have a question???

What makes you guys so sure he’d win? What’s so different about his pedigree than Randy’s? He has 2 NC’s with Urban and crew? So Randy has 3! He was a first year guy at MSU when he went and didn’t do well his first year. In fact his record as the coach at MSU is 13-11 and 7-9 in the SEC. THIS is his best year when the SEC was DOWN and he went 8-4. That does not mean he’s destined for greatness, our guy went 9-3 last year and we thought he was great too, only to find out NOT SO MUCH. NOTHING about him to me screams I’m THAT GUY…NOTHING!

I’d be VERY disappointed and ANGERED if we fired Randy Shannon for Dan Mullen.

At any rate, I'm confident in the Gruden thing, have heard it from too many people I trust that it is going down.

^^^Also that offense is NOT Hurricane Football^^^

It does NOT prepare you for the NFL and that is a LONG TIME UM mantra. I think our NFL alum would be opposed to that as well.

Why aren't people talking about Gruden's record. A Super Bowl, then what? His record is worst than Larry Coker. Why will he be any different here than he was at Tampa? He talks an excellent game, then what?

who ever comes in... wll bench JNOODLE...we got rid of daddy, now lets get rid of his son...we are moving in the right direction.. now lets PACK SUN LIFE AND GET LOUND!!!!


Gruden is a good choice, but would be gone in less than 5 years to the NFL. Even Pete Carroll went back to the NFL. We would be having talking about a new candidate for the U again in a short time. Is this what we want? What if is he leaves in 2 years, ala Saban? Where would we be then?

Why is Mike Leach not being considered? I heard Dan LeBetard on ESPN radio yesterday, and his comments on Leach were interesting. "What he could do with the athletes he would have access to in South Florida, and how he would translate that on the field would be a sight to see."

Why is he being labeled a scum? He has a law degree, never being sanctioned or reprimanded by the NCAA, while competing on the recruiting field against Texas, Oklahoma, and Oklahoma State. Is this easier than competing against Florida and FSU in recruiting? He didn't get the picks of the crop, but he coached and developed these recruits. How many times have we heard that RS could not develop the talent he got. This is what LeBatard was referring to. What this mad genius would do with our South Florida talent, boggles the mind.

The guy is young, lives in South Florida, has enough of a roguish mentality, to fit the U, "us against the college football world" that JJ created. What baggage does he have? There are enough sides to what happened at Tech to give the man the benefit of the doubt. Tech already settled with him, enough legal minds believe he has just cause against ESPN in his case. How many among us would not sue, if we had the means, for what we may feel is unjust termination or slander? Because of this he is labeled a scum?

He's quirky, so what. He likes pirates, so what. What ever makes him tick, obviously translated into success on the field in Texas. He doesn't communicate well with boosters, so what. Saban doesn't, look at we has done in Alabama. The man has a law degree, I'm sure his communication skills would be an improvement over Shannon's (no disrespect meant to RS, I'm just stating what has been documented.) We gave RS a chance with not the greatest of personalities, this man has all the long term tools we need at the U. Give him the opportunity.

What candidate has more experience, and accomplished more than what he has done? Not one candidate being mentioned has won a college championship, Gruden won a Super Bowl. Look at his total body of work, and his record is not that impressive. Leach wants to be a Cane, already interviewed once, and would attack the job with a fervor to silence his critics. And, he would probably stay here a long, long time.


Why not consider Mike Shula? I would like to hear some real reasons - why not.

It's a great day to be a Cane Fan!!! I am salivating at all the possibilities!!!!

I mentioned a few days ago I thought Jay Gruden would be a good get. Now I see IF John signs he will bring his brother Jay in as the offensive coach. I now say John will stay 3 years then head back to NFL and his brother Jay takes over as the head coach. Just my opinion. I just want Miami to get a coach who will stay more than 2 years.

Handy Manny, any news on LATWAN ANDERSON if Gruden is brought in? I'm hearing former USF coach Jim Leavitt will be the defensive coordinator.
CANE 4 LIFE

Leach's offense does not cater to Running Backs and you would have mass transfers plus we really don't know what happened between him and Craig James' son so can you imagine an altercation between him and a UM player ? Just Like Jim Leavitt I can. Yes Gruden is the home run pick but at what cost ? Who or what kind of assistants will he put around him ? Obviously at the least, his brother would be the QB coach ? who knows.

for once i have to say, poor article. For EVERY successful person in sports there are thousands of examples of someone who wasnt successful. shoot, the same could be said in the traditional business world.

Can't wait. If he is hired it shows The U is serious about the football program. recruits take notice

And for those who claim racism for the Shannon firing or the lack of minorities as candidates, I say this:

It is a sad day, when a minority, be it black, or other, would accept mediocrity in one of "their own" and use race as an excuse to maintain that status quo. Everyone should strive for excellence, no matter the race or creed. Shame on you all. By the way, last time I checked, even though low on the list, Cristobal was a potential candidate.

And black coaches have little or no to prove anymore- Dungy is the prime example.

Canes are in the drivers seat!!!!! Whoot whoot !!!!!

ignorant comment by rula.

If Gruden is the man and then heads off to the NFL in a few years, it only means one thing. He WON big with the U, like an NC title, significant BCS bowl wins, or consistent top10 rankings. If he doesn't why would the NFL want a loser? So if the U establishes a good pay package for head coaches, and becomes relevant again, who cares if the guy leaves after a few years, as there will be many others good choices who will be clamoring to take the job and continue the winning tradition.

MiamiMike couldn't agree more. Jay would be a great QB coach also.

To the people on here that hate on the spread or what some like to call the gimmicky offense. You do realize that when Miami went to a pro style set that it was a gimmicky offense as well. See the problem is not getting with the times and being ahead of the curve. Keep bashing it all you want but it could be a staple of winning here at the U. Once we start winning I don't care what offense they use to get the job done.

Second why so much negative talk about Dan Mullen look at the guys body of work. Alex Smith and Tim Tebow. Look it obvious that UF isn't the same without Mullen. Look what the guy is doing for MSU plus the guy can get the recruits from up north.

It's just my opinion but I don't think any Miami fan will care what coach we get or what offense they run as long as we are winning again.


Mike Leach is a drunk, that's why he is not being considered. And Dan Mullen is already doing more with less in the toughest conference in football. All things considered, I think Mike Shula would have the best balance of everything that UM would be looking for. He turned 'bama around while they were under probation, no small feat in the SEC!!

Either way it looks like UM is in this to WIN!!!!

Go 'canes!!

There is a fine article on Mike Leach in another local newspaper. Leach's players graduated at a higher rate than any other public university. Also, read the depositions on the situation with the James player. Leach's position is quite strong, this is why he has filed a lawsuit. What was alleged that he did to the player in the dark closet is not correct. Read the depositions taken on all parties, including the player.

Also, regarding the post that the only reason that Gruden would leave the U, is because he has won a NC. Must we remember Saban? Sometimes one goes back, to what one knows, for other reasons than having won it all.

1) Please take Larry Cokers name off of the coaching greats at UM. Anyone who takes a program and did to it what he did is not a great coach. He won the bulk of his games and championship with Butch Davis players.
2) Dane Mullen or any other coach from that UF offense, don't want them. In the Urban Myer offense you have to have a Cam Newton or Tim Teabow for it to be affective. Just thinking, how has the QB's from those offenses fared in the NFL?
3) Randy being fired was NOT a black/white thing. His downfall was his assistants. You HAVE to have great assistant coaches to be get the job done. A true CANES fan loves the program more than the coach. Good luck to Randy. He will remake himself and coach again. One day he will get another chance.

I want the Stanford coach. He is good.

Ignorant comments by rula and j smooth and whatever other name the idiot gator troll sean wilson likes to use.

meanwhile back in trailerville the stench of burnt manure hangs over dump at UF. Another assistant left thus ensuring a larger dosage of meds for Urban. tisk tisk

I tell u right now, I'll take a Dan Mullen or mike stoops over gruden any day. The re re's in Miami's admin think if they bring Gruden in they'll fill seats and that's it, they don't get the stadium is too big and too far away.


Wow no african american canidates, SHOCKING.... yeah rite we're not good enough.

Posted by: the rula | December 01, 2010 at 04:34 AM

--------------------

We just fired one. Always complaining. Go F yourself with your inequality bullsh!t.

@Andrew Ian - agreed. Plus whoever said Mullen is 8-4 in a down yer in the SEC clearly doesnt understand the divisional split in the SEC. The SEC East is down and he swept the schedule against that division. His losses are to Auburn (by 3), at LSU, at Bama and by 7 in double OT to Arkansas in his second year at the school.I agree the spread is not historically Canes football, but times are absolutely changing

Manny,

is that "You can't be relevant nationally and not win your conference"? Because I don't see how that could possibly not be the case, especially in the second to the bottom BCS conference, the ACC.

Good post though and in the end no matter the out come with Gruden this school has taken a huge step in the right direction. It appears that they are learning from their mistakes and I love the fact that above all else this administration from the top down is committed to winning.

Dont believe the racial crap. Thats the d-bag gator troll trying to portray cane fans as racist.

Go back to biting your pillow sean.

They say Leach's 2006 interview with UM went very poorly, so that probably a big reason why he isn't being considered.

There's also the baggage. Doesn't sound like it would be Leach.

I like Harbaugh, but he'd probably take the Michigan job.

All seem like good candidates.

The act of firing Shannon and going to meet with Gruden already speaks volumes.

The University is very aware that if Gruden is named head coach, season ticket sales would explode. How about all the t-shirts, hats, etc. that would be sold in a matter of minutes. This is a very similar situation to when the Heat got Lebron and Bosh. Money and lots of it is ready to be made. My wish list for the next head coach at the "U". 1. Gruden 2. Harbaugh 3. Mullen. Harbaugh could have the same appeal as Gruden to the "U" faithful. Mullen not as much but still a great get. Just not sold on his gimick offense.

Every entity of this Football Program involved has to become one. There must be unity and this entity must be the same vibration, the same energy.

From the Coaching staff to the people who serve the water down on the field. You must all co-exist at every level. In order for this to take place, a change must start within. You must redefine who you are as an individual. We has a tendency to take on a task and bring baggage along.

Self healing starts with an individual. Self love starts with an individual. Winning a championship starts within.

To the U Football Dept. know that each and every one of you must take accountability because you are all connected on a universal level. If there are some of you zigging and some of you zagging then you can not co-exist.

To the U Football Players, you must learn to win the championship within yourselves. If your desire is to win championships, then it must be to win in all areas of you life and not just football. Know that each and everyone of us has our own individual Championships that already exist through the mind of GOD, through the mind of Love Intellect, through the mind of Cosmic Universal Knowledge that is everywhere present in its fullness. Its already there!

To the U Football Players, be in the moment, be in joy, happiness, harmony and peace. The same happiness that you have when things are going your way and makes you feel good, you must carry that same happiness when things are not going your way and don't make you feel good.
You see, its maintaining that awareness and raising your consciousness, that will keep you and sustain you no matter what the circumstances are. Remember, winter always turns to spring no matter what the circumstances are.

To Coach Randy Shannon, you can be HEALED WITHOUT SCARS. We LOVE you coach Shannon!!!!!
Know that this is part of your journey and it does not end here. Be grateful for your experiences. We must all learn to appreciate the radical amazement of this LIFE.

Peace and Blessings to the U Family

@dbag extroidinaire....u type like ur the DADT poster child

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